'Segodnya', quoting 'Zerkalo Tyzhnya', runs a story on how Ukrainian VIPs have been allegedly illegally purchasing prestige automobiles from sources in the Israeli embassy in Kyiv.
The vehicles, having a total value of over $3M, were imported under diplomatic cover to avoid heavy import duties and taxes. They include the following models: Bentley Brooklands, Bentley Arnage, Aston Martin DBS, BMW X6, Mercedes-Benz S 65 AMG, Mercedes-Benz G 55 AMG, Mercedes-Benz SL 550, Mercedes-Benz S 600 L, Mercedes-Benz CL 550, Lexus ES 330, Lexus LX 470 and Infiniti FX 35 - classy motors indeed..
The alleged crooked purchasers of this pricy metal include the daughter of the current Vice Prime Minister Serhiy Tihipko - she went for a Mercedes-Benz SL 550. The Bentley Brooklands was acquired the former Deputy Prime Minister Vitaliy Haiduk, and the Bentley Arnage was bought ex-deputy of the Kyiv city council, Ihor Skosar. The Aston Martin DBS was bought the first deputy head of the Kyiv regional council Yuriy Pavlov, and Luhansk regional council member Serhiy Shakhov favoured a Mercedes-Benz S 600L.
According to an official distributor, about half of all luxury Mercs imported into the country get in 'unofficially'.
The General Directorate for Combating Organized Crime of the Ukrainian Ministry of Internal Affairs are investigating...will any of the people mentioned above be pulled and charged? Most unlikely..
p.s. Another vehicle fraudster is Stepan Chernovetsky - son of Kyiv mayor Leonid Chernovetsky.
A couple of months ago Stepan acquired a 600 horsepower Porsche Carrera GT supercar- book price just under $ 500K. In order to pay less tax and duty he registered the vehicle as a similar-looking Porsche Carrera S, which costs under $100K. Using this banal deception, he 'has taken' the Ukrainian customs for almost half a million UAH.
A couple of years ago his dad's bank was sold for 500 million euros...
Have the appropriate law-enforcement agencies taken any action? Are you joking?